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South Africa The Facts

  • Full name: Republic of South Africa
  • Population: 48.6 million (UN, 2007)
  • Capital: Pretoria (name may change to Tshwane). Cape Town is legislative capital
  • Largest city: Johannesburg
  • Area: 1.22 million sq km (470,693 sq miles)
  • Major languages: 11 official languages including English, Afrikaans, Sesotho, Setswana, Xhosa and Zulu
  • Major religion: Christianity, Islam, indigenous beliefs
  • Life expectancy: 49 years (men), 50 years (women)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Rand = 100 cents
  • Main exports: Gold, diamonds, metals and minerals, cars, machinery
  • GNI per capita: US $4,960 (World Bank, 2006)
  • Internet domain: .za
  • International dialling code: +27
  • President: Thabo Mbeki
  • The press
    • The Star - Johannesburg-based daily, city's oldest newspaper
    • The Sowetan Johannesburg-based tabloid
    • Daily Sun - mass-circulation tabloid
    • Beeld - largest Afrikaans daily
    • Mail & Guardian - weekly, operates Mail & Guardian online
    • Business Day - daily Financial Mail - business weekly
      Sunday Times/The Times - South Africa's oldest Sunday newspaper; publishes subscription-only daily
  • Television
    • SABC - state broadcaster, operates three national TV networks, two pay-TV channels
    • e.tv - free-to-air commercial network
    • M-Net - pay-TV, pan-African audience
  • Radio
    • SABC - state broadcaster with 20 regional and national services in 11 languages, including: national English-language network SAfm; contemporary music station 5 FM; national Afrikaans station Radio Sonder Grense; national Zulu station Ukhozi FM;
    • Sesotho station Lesedi FM
    • Channel Africa - SABC's external radio service, targeted at the African continent
    • YFM - popular Johannesburg commercial R&B, soul and hip-hop station
    • 702 Talk Radio - Johannesburg commercial news and talk station
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